Election panel orders investigation into charges

  • Defeated Congress nominee files complaint
  • Two of three cases against Dey unimportant

    CUTTACK: The district administration has started investigations into the alleged `false affidavit' submitted by legislator Samir Dey during the filing of nomination for 2004 Assembly elections.

    Dey, a senior BJP leader, who has won from the prestigious assembly segment for the past three terms, is now a Cabinet Minister holding higher education portfolio.

    The returning officer for the constituency Mahendra Kumar Rath, who is also the sub-collector, on Tuesday confirmed that the district election office has recently received a letter to this effect from the Election Commissioner.

    "The EC has ordered investigation into the allegations made against the Cuttack city legislator and initiate prosecution if necessary,'' Rath said.

    Congress candidate Suresh Mohapatra, who lost the election by a narrow margin, had earlier levelled the allegations against Dey.

    Mohapatra had petitioned the EC stating that the BJP leader had submitted a false affidavit at the time of filing his nomination.

    "Whereas Dey had three cases pending against him at the time of filing the nomination, he had not mentioned anything about the cases in the affidavit," the Congress leader alleged.

    Even non-bailable warrants (NBWs) were issued against Dey in all these three cases, Mohapatra alleged in his petition.

    Unimportant cases

    "We have investigated into all the three pending cases pertaining to the BJP leader. While two of the cases were unimportant (U-I) cases, the third case has not yet been established," the sub-collector said.

    It may be mentioned here that opposition Congress members made a ruckus in the Assembly demanding Dey's resignation from the Cabinet when the issue came to light in 2005.

    The Opposition was baying for his blood following the then State Women and Child Development Minister Pramila Mallick's resignation on similar allegation.

    Later, another BJP legislator Pradipta Naik, who was holding the labour and employment portfolio, was also forced to put in his papers following a case was registered against him for filing false affidavit.

    Dey, however, escaped unhurt during that period and later obtained regular bail in the cases after surrendering in court.

    The UI cases registered against him in 1994 were for holding public meeting inside `silence zone' of Cuttack city. NBWs were issued against Dey, as summons could not be served on him for lack of proper address.